Thoughts On My Idea

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Active User
Aug 26, 2013
I am in the process of designing an accessory 3d printer for my gantry router. I have seen many machines use many diverse materials for the frame and axis supports. I want to use 8mm carbon fiber tubes instead of the more common linear metal rods. What I'd like to know is, how to they compare to the metal rods?. The primary design is of a new Z axis and Y axis. My gantry has a Z travel of only 3.00" so, I've designed for 10.00" in Z and Y direction. I plan on printing all the necessary brackets and sleds first and then assembling the arm as an add on to the spindle mount so I don't have to dis assemble anything, just bolt it on and print. Since the arm will protrude 16.50" in the Y axis will, 3 carbon fiber tubes in a triangular configuration, be rigid enough to support a hot end with a stepper motor without too much side to side deviation?. I don't think, but don't really know, if there is much drag co efficient to a hot end as it moves to deposit the hot filament. Thoughts and comments welcomed.


H-M Supporter - Gold Member
H-M Supporter - Gold Member ($25)
Feb 1, 2015
The steel rods also serve as a bearing surface for your sliding motion. I would be concerned with wear unless you have worked out a solution to this.

I used c.f. tubes rails for a past project that were about the diameter you are proposing. They supported a weight of about seven pounds. There was a slight sag but we only used a single tube on each side for support. There were two similar shafts mounted below to create the rack. We set our test object on the rails so we did not have any sliding motion to contend with.
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